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Audits and Evaluations

Condition of Archival Records in Federal Institutions (CARFI)
Annex H

Risk Factors

The table below identifies the six risk factors as well as the corresponding questions and circumstances contributing to the risk.

Recordkeeping - Intellectual Control
Risk Factor Situation Identified as Contributing to Risk
1. The archival records cannot be transferred to LAC and they stay indefinitely in the GC institution
  • Unable to apply RDA for specified archival records -and as a result cannot transfer the archival records to LAC
    (Section I, question 1.1)
  • No retention periods - there is no date established for transfer of the records to LAC (Section I, question 1.2)
2. Problems with maintaining control over the archival records in the GC institution
  • Decentralized recordkeeping with little or no central control from HQ over the application of RDAs in regional
    (Section I, questions 1.4 and 1.5)
  • Archival records are not under intellectual control or are under poor intellectual control as indicated by problems with records management system (Section I, question 1.6), classification system (Section I, question 1.7), and records management program (Section I, question 1.8)
  • Records management staff cannot identify, locate and retrieve archival records (Section I, question 1.10)
  • Record containers are not clearly labeled -there is the potential for losing track of the archival records
    (Section I, question 1.11)
  • Lack of procedures for tracking archival records when removed from a storage location (Section I, question 1.14)
Storage Conditions and Environments - Physical Management
Risk Factor Situation Identified as Contributing to Risk
3. GC institution is not prepared to handle potential incidents.
  • Lack of emergency preparedness and lack of training in carrying out the response plan
    (Section II, questions1.2 and 1.3)
  • Lack of recovery procedures to deal with potential incidents including water damage
    (Section II, question 1.7)
4. Storage environments are not designed for the preservation of archival records.
  • Inconsistent operation of HVAC systems (Section II, question 2.2)
  • Food and beverages are allowed in areas where archival records are stored (Section II, question 4.2)
  • Archival records located in areas not protected from potential water damage (Section II, question 6.1)
  • Records storage areas are not cleaned on a regular basis (Section II, question 6.2)
  • Storage areas are overcrowded (Section II, question 6.9)
5. Incidents where damage to or potential damage to and loss of records have occurred
  • Pest infestations and contaminants (Section II, question 4.1)
  • Water, fire, light (Section II, question 5.1)
6. More than one media type is stored in the same storage container
  • Different media require different storage conditions & containers (Section II, question 6.4)

Interpreting the Risk Factor Rating
The table below provides a scale for interpreting risk rating.

Scale Percentage
Low less than 15%
Medium 15-30%
High Greater than 30%

CARFI survey questions identified as indicating risk

For the purposes of our analysis, the CARFI Working Group identified from a larger series of questions approximately 20, in relation to recordkeeping and storage where negative answers would indicate risk to archival records.

Section I-Institutional Level-General Requirements for Records Management

1.1 Is your institution able to apply the Records Disposition Authority (RDA) for the identification and transfer of archival records to LAC?
☐ Yes
☐ No - please describe problems in applying the RDA:
☐ Terms and Conditions do not clearly identify which records are archival
☐ No Application Guide exists
☐ Other - please specify: ___________________

Note: A no answer to question 1.1 indicates risk to archival records.

1.2 What percentage of the archival records included in the RDA has retention periods assigned?
☐ 0 - 20%
☐ 21 - 40%
☐ 41 - 60%
☐ 61 - 80%
☐ over 80%

1.4 Do the institution's regional operations have separate recordkeeping policies and procedures?
☐ Yes
☐ No
☐ No regional operations

Note: A yes answer to question 1.4 indicates risk if considered in relation to a yes answer to question 1.5

1.5 If there are regional recordkeeping operations, do the regions apply the institution's Records Disposition Authorities to identify archival records for transfer to Library and Archives Canada?
☐ Yes
☐ No
☐ No regional operations

1.6 What percentage of the archival records included in this Records Disposition Authority is captured:
☐ in a single records management system that is standard in the institution
(e.g. iRims, Foremost) ____%
☐ in multiple records management systems ____%
☐ not captured in any system ____%
Total: 100%

Note: Risk is indicated in question 1.5, if archival records are captured in more than one system or no system.

1.7 What percentage of the archival records included in this Records Disposition Authority is organized:
☐ under a single classification scheme that is standard in the institution ____%
☐ under multiple classification schemes ____%
☐ not organized under any classification scheme ____%
Total: 100%

Note: Risk is indicated in question 1.7, if archival records are classified under multiple classification schemes or no classification scheme.

1.8 What percentage of archival records covered by this RDA is under the custody and control of your institution's records management program?
☐ 0 - 20%
☐ 21 - 40%
☐ 41 - 60%
☐ 61 - 80%
☐ over 80%

Note: Risk is indicated if the answer to question 1.8 is less than 60%

1.10 Can the institution's records management staff identify, locate and retrieve the archival records?
☐ Yes
☐ please identify problems in identifying, locating, and retrieving archival records (check all that apply):
☐ Location of records not known (e.g., loss of corporate memory due to staff leaving; records moved without documentation)
☐ No listing exists for these records
☐ No procedures for retrieving records from off-site locations
☐ Other - please specify: ___________________

Note: A no answer to question 1.10 indicates risk to the archival records.

1.11 What percentage of record containers is clearly labelled to identify contents?
☐ 0 - 20%
☐ 21 - 40%
☐ 41 - 60%
☐ 61 - 80%
☐ over 80%

Note: Risk is indicated if the answer to question 1.11 is less than 60%

1.14 Are there procedures in place for tracking the archival records when they are removed from a storage location that is under the control of the institution's records management program?
☐ Yes
☐ No

Note: A no answer to question 1.14 indicates risk to the archival records

Section II - Specific Criteria for Records Storage

II.1.2 Does the building have a current emergency response plan for document recovery?
☐ Yes
☐ No

II.1.3 What percentage of records management personnel is trained in the emergency response plan?
☐ 0 - 20%
☐ 21 - 40%
☐ 41 - 60%
☐ 61 - 80%
☐ over 80%

Note: Risk is indicated when the answers to questions II.1.2 and II.1.3 are considered together.

II.1.7 Have arrangements been made for recovery operations should there be water damage to the records:
drying space ☐ Yes ☐ No
disaster supplies ☐ Yes ☐ No
freezing facilities ☐ Yes ☐ No
human resources assigned ☐ Yes ☐ No

II.2.2 Does the HVAC system run on a 24-hour / 7-day basis?
☐ Yes
☐ No

II.4.1 Describe any pest infestation or contaminants found in the storage areas where archival records are kept:

Pests Year of most recent incident Were archival records damaged? Scope of damage (% of records affected) Were corrective actions taken?
Insects
☐ Yes
☐ No
☐ Yes
☐ No
☐ 0 - 20%
☐ 21 - 40%
☐ 41 - 60%
☐ 61 - 80%
☐ Over 80%
☐ Yes
☐ No
Rodents
☐ Yes
☐ No
☐ Yes
☐ No
☐ 0 - 20%
☐ 21 - 40%
☐ 41 - 60%
☐ 61 - 80%
☐ Over 80%
☐ Yes
☐ No
Mould
☐ Yes
☐ No
☐ Yes
☐ No
☐ 0 - 20%
☐ 21 - 40%
☐ 41 - 60%
☐ 61 - 80%
☐ Over 80%
☐ Yes
☐ No

II.4.2 Are food and beverages banned in the records storage areas?
☐ Yes
☐ No

II.5.1 Indicate any damage caused to archival records by natural or artificial agents:

Cause Year of most recent incident Were archival records damaged? Scope of damage (% of records affected) Were corrective actions taken?
Water
☐ Yes
☐ No
☐ Yes
☐ No
☐ 0 - 20%
☐ 21 - 40%
☐ 41 - 60%
☐ 61 - 80%
☐ Over 80%
☐ Yes
☐ No
Fire
☐ Yes
☐ No
☐ Yes
☐ No
☐ 0 - 20%
☐ 21 - 40%
☐ 41 - 60%
☐ 61 - 80%
☐ Over 80%
☐ Yes
☐ No
Light
☐ Yes
☐ No
☐ Yes
☐ No
☐ 0 - 20%
☐ 21 - 40%
☐ 41 - 60%
☐ 61 - 80%
☐ Over 80%
☐ Yes
☐ No

II.6.1 What percentage of archival records is located in areas protected from flooding, i.e. NOT in basements, top floors of buildings (roof leaks), and rooms with overhead water pipes:
☐ 0 - 20%
☐ 21 - 40%
☐ 41 - 60%
☐ 61 - 80%
☐ Over 80%

II.6.2 How often are the records storage areas cleaned?
☐ weekly
☐ monthly
☐ annually
☐ less frequently

II.6.4 Are the archival records separated by media type, e.g. text--paper, audio-video, electronic, maps, etc.?
☐ Yes - record containers hold only one medium type
☐ No - record containers hold mixed media

II.6.9 What proportion of space in the records storage areas is currently utilized?
☐ < 80%
☐ 80 - 100%
☐ > 100% (i.e., storage area is overcrowded)

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